Carolina Panthers: 5 matchups to watch vs. the Jets in Week 1

Carolina Panthers wide receiver Robby Anderson (11) Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
Carolina Panthers wide receiver Robby Anderson (11) Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Stantley Thomas-Oliver /

NY Jets Elijah Moore Vs.  Stantley Thomas-Oliver, Keith Taylor

The new-look Panthers cornerback room has high expectations going into this season, especially with the additions of Jaycee Horn and A.J.Bouye. However, Bouye is suspended for the first two games of the season and with the injury to Troy Pride Jr., things get a little complicated in the slot.

Second-year player Stantley Thomas-Oliver and fifth-round pick Keith Taylor are now in line to start on Sunday thanks to those developments and while rookie quarterbacks tend to have growing pains, Wilson should not be discounted especially with a player like Elijah Moore lining up opposite whoever starts.

Thomas-Oliver showed glimpses of what he could become last year but also had some major lapses in concentration and general rookie mistakes. As did Pride Jr. who started over him last season and was in line to again this year.

If the Panthers decide to go the other way and start Keith Taylor, things don’t look much better. Taylor, while talented, is also a rookie and still has a lot to learn about playing in the NFL.

So while the Jets aren’t expected to be lights out this year, starting a backup’s backup is never something you want to consider, even against a seemingly inferior opponent.

Speaking of that opponent, let’s talk a bit about who they will be covering.

Moore was a second-round pick of the Jets this offseason and absolutely torched defenses last year at Ole Miss. Racking up almost 1200 yards in only eight games while showing steady improvement over his three years with the program.

Whether Moore can keep up that type of production at the next level remains to be seen, but we do know what he is capable of against college-level opponents and that seems to be what the Panthers are offering on Sunday.

So look for the Panthers to shade Jeremy Chinn to that side early and often cause whoever starts may need all the help they can get.